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Colorado TESOL News


Colorado Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages

October 2012 


CoTESOL 36th Annual Fall Convention and Exhibition

November 9-10, 2012

Red Lion Hotel Denver Southeast

3200 S. Parker Rd., Aurora, CO., 80014

logo 2012 
"Setting the Tempo to the Tune of Innovation"
Registration Forms ("Early Bird" Deadline: October 20, 2012)

Convention Fees 

 Register Online and Pay by Credit Card (small processing fee applies)

Fill-in and Print-out Form for Mail-in Registration

Printable Form for Mail-in Registration (.html format)

Printable Form for Mail-in Registration (.docx format)

Complete Convention Program (.pdf)
Academic Credit Options Available through University of Colorado Denver


Red Lion Hotel Denver S.E. Reservations and Information

Special $90 Group Rate for Red Lion Hotel Denver S.E. Hotel 

Click here to reserve your hotel room online at the special $90 rate

(Use Group Code COTE1108 or call 800-RED-LION)

Tune in November 9th and 10th 

Chris Tombari

2nd Vice President and Conference Program Chair


Our theme this year, "Setting the Tempo to the Tune of Innovation," brings up the big question: What will get your intellectual toes tapping? Pronunciation? Lexicography? Classroom techniques? Even escaping for a blissful moment amidst the melodic notes of classical guitar? Our conference this year will bring you around 120 presentations that will appeal to the teacher and learner in us all. Now a few notes on some of our headliners:


  • Plenary: "The Music of Spoken English: Setting the Tempo to the Tune of English;" Judy B. Gilbert, the author of Clear Speech Third Edition, and Clear Speech from the Start
  • Plenary: "English and How It Got That Way;" Kory Stamper, lexicographer and editor for the Merriam-Webster dictionary
  • Friday evening entertainment: Alfredo Muro, guitarist, Peruvian interpreter, composer, arranger and improviser
  • CoTESOL Special Interest Groups (SIGs) forums:
    • Addressing the Needs of Students with Interrupted/Limited Education
    • Listen to the Sound of the New Beat of ELA Professional Development and Research in Colorado School Districts
    • The Other Side of the Job Coin: Staying Safe and Healthy at Work
    • An update on the ELLs in Colorado
    • Elementary and Secondary Newcomer Programming: School and District Leaders Talk about Bridges and Barriers to Success
    • Using the iPad in the ESL Classroom and Other Best Tech Practices from 2012
  • And don't forget our extensive publishers' exhibits and the networking opportunities during the coffee breaks


Come join us and hundreds of your colleagues at the Red Lion Hotel Denver Southeast. 



Erin Kimmel

1st Vice President


CoTESOL is seeking nominations for two open positions on the board: Elementary Education Special Interest Group Co-chair and Teacher Education/ Action Research Special Interest Group Co-chair. The responsibilities include attending approximately 8 board meetings (on Fridays between 4-7pm) and assisting with decision making; contributing articles to the CoTESOL newsletter (usually 2 per year but this is split between the co-chairs); encouraging people in your network to present at the convention; organizing a forum of interest for your SIG for the annual fall convention (along with your co-chair); spending some time at the fall convention assisting with bag-stuffing, registration, "ask-me" duties; and generally serving as an ambassador for the organization. New board members are asked to make a two-year commitment. 

 Any interested applicants should complete the application form and return to Erin Kimmel at by October 26, 2012.  


Angela Bell

Socio-Political Liaison


On June 18-19, 2012, CoTESOL's Socio-Political Liaison, Angela Bell, joined over 40 other members of TESOL International Association in Washington, DC for TESOL Advocacy Day 2012. Now in its seventh year, the program featured a full day of issue briefings and activities around education legislation and advocacy, followed by a day of visits to Congressional offices on Capitol Hill. With representatives from over 20 US affiliates in attendance, the goals of Advocacy Day were not only to lobby on key issues for TESOL, but also to provide an interactive learning experience for participants on elements of advocacy. By the end of the event, TESOL members had visited the offices of approximately 100 Representatives and Senators.


As numerous policy issues are under consideration in the U.S. Congress, the agenda included topics for both K-12 and adult education. To maximize the impact of TESOL Advocacy Day, key members of Congress serving on the education and appropriations committees in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives were identified for meetings. This year, Angela met with staff from the offices of Senator Bennet, Senator Udall, Congressman Polis, and Congressman Lamborn to discuss the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act and the Workforce Investment Act, and the impact the current proposals may have on English learners in Colorado.


To fully prepare for Advocacy Day, each participant was required to do several things in advance. For example, participants set up their own individual meetings with their Congressional representatives. To assist with this, TESOL International Association provided directions and guidance, as well as the list of specific Representatives and Senators to contact.  Angela contacted the schedulers via email and follow-up calls. It was amazing how easy it was to gain access to staff of our Congressmen and Senators!


Participants were also sent talking points and background information on key issues so that they could begin to familiarize themselves with the issues in advance. To help make their Congressional meetings more effective, participants were also encouraged to find examples from their own programs to illustrate the talking points. Of course, funding for our schools and programs was a major concern, and it was easy to find stories to share of our struggles. However, Angela also made it a point to share success stories of what can happen when our programs, teachers and students are supported.


The program started with three briefings from experts on key issues and legislation. The first briefing featured staff from the offices of Sen. Michael Bennet (D-CO) and Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-AZ) discussing what legislators know about ESL and ELLs, and what they need to hear from teachers. To discuss the current status of the Workforce Investment Act (WIA), a staffer from the House Education and Workforce Committee was featured on the next panel. Dr. Rosalinda Barrera, director of the Office of English Language Acquisition (OELA) at the U.S. Department of Education, closed out the morning with an update on the activities of her office.


Following these briefings, a series of activities were held to review aspects of the legislative process as well as how to prepare for meetings with members on Capitol Hill. Participants had the opportunity to role play as members of Congress in a mock hearing to discuss a piece of legislation, as well to have a mock debate on the floor of Congress to try and pass legislation. Participants were also provided key information to prepare for their meetings.


On June 19, participants went to Capitol Hill to have meetings with members of Congress and staff. Meetings generally lasted approximately thirty minutes. Legislative assistants   Scott Groginsky, Molly Fishman, Autumn Leva, and Krysten Joyce seemed genuinely interested in how policies are impacting English learners and their teachers. It was clear that what the politicians wanted to hear most was stories from the field. They also wanted to know data, what was working and what needed to be changed. Angela was happy she did her homework and discovered that Colorado Senators Bennet and Udall, in addition to Congressman Polis are leading the way in advocating for English learners through the DREAM Act, proposed changes to NCLB including the Growth to Excellence Act, and with the reauthorization of the Workforce Investment Act. Senator Bennet's experience as the former superintendent of Denver Public Schools still resonates with him as he makes decisions on the Hill. Angela was particularly excited by the participation of Senator Bennet's Legislative Assistant, Sergio Gonzales, in the briefings to TESOL representatives the previous day. She thinks it helped Colorado stand out as a state which is well-represented in Washington.


At the end of the day, the participants shared their experiences and what they learned over dinner. It was interesting to hear what other people experienced on their visit. Overall, all of the participants agreed this event was a very positive experience for them and for TESOL International Association.


Angela felt so strongly about her opportunity to learn about current issues and communicate with leaders who make decisions impacting our students, she decided to plan a forum for the CoTESOL conference. Please come to the Socio-Political Liaison Forum at 1:30 in the Jefferson room at the Red Lion Hotel during the convention on November 9, 2012. You will hear an update from representatives from the Office of Language, Culture and Equity and the Office of Adult Education and Family Literacy (AEFL) of the Colorado Department of Education. Following will be representatives from the Colorado offices of our political leaders. They will discuss some of the current issues, such as the DREAM Act, Growth to Excellence Act, and the English Learning and Innovation Act. Find out more about what Angela learned including what is happening with NCLB and the Workforce Investment Act. You will also have opportunities to ask questions and share your stories.


Additional information about TESOL Advocacy Day is available online at If you are interested in learning more about your Congressional representatives' current legislative issues, go the TESOL U.S. Advocacy Action Center at



Hilario Benzon

Communications Liaison


Although the Colorado ASSET Bill, Senate Bill 15, failed to pass out of the state House of Representatives Finance Committee during the 2012 legislative session, the ASSET Bill made it farther through the state legislature than it ever had before in the bill's history. The Colorado ASSET Bill is a proposed bill that would create a new category of tuition called Standard-Rate tuition. Students will be eligible for this new category if they meet the following criteria:

  • The student must attend a Colorado public or private high school for a minimum of 3 years.
  • The student must graduate from a public or private high school in Colorado or obtain a general equivalency diploma (GED) in Colorado.
  • The student must apply and be admitted to a Colorado institution of higher education within 1 year of graduating.
  • Many students are always working their way through the immigration system, and the remaining students will be required to seek legal status.

The standard-rate tuition level will be set at the in-state tuition level without the State funded COF reduction.


The Higher Education Access Alliance (HEAA) is a statewide coalition of organizations and individuals dedicated to promoting affordable access to higher education for all Colorado high school graduates. HEAA is managed by six non-profits that make up the Steering Committee: The Colorado Catholic Conference, the Colorado Education Association, the Colorado Immigrant Rights Coalition, the Latin American Educational Foundation, Metro Organizations for People, and Padres y Jóvenes Unidos. HEAA also includes numerous community organizing groups and individuals from across Colorado.


This past year, HEAA added more partners to its coalition in order to get the Colorado ASSET Bill passed through the legislature. With the support of coalition partners and other supporters, HEAA generated thousands of emails and wrote letters to legislators resulting in a historic first passing out of the House Education Committee. This year, the bill also passed out of the Committees of the Senate and from the floor of State Senate before going to the House.


One positive fact resulting from this past legislative session is that the state Republican Party established a potential plank within their platform that resembled the ASSET Bill. This past session, 46% of the Republicans at the State Assembly voted to support this plank. This means that 46% of the Republicans who attended the State Assembly support the ASSET Bill.

HEAA is poised to build on the support garnered from this past year in order to show legislators that their constituencies do in fact support the ASSET Bill. HEAA is committed to increasing its efforts in preparation for 2013 legislative session. 



Leslie Grant

Higher Education/IEP SIG Co-Chair


Chances are you have heard about flipped classrooms, but you may not be sure what they are.  Flipped classrooms take the traditional "transmittal" model of teaching and turn it upside down.  Instead of the delivery of new information in class with later practice and reinforcement (i.e., homework) outside of class, a flipped model makes the new information available to students outside of class, most often in some sort of electronic format, with class time, then, focused on interaction and collaboration.  Learning becomes more social and constructivist, with students as active participants in building their understandings based on prior experience and existing knowledge.  The teacher's role in a flipped classroom goes from "sage on the stage" to "guide on the side" as described by King (1993).


According to Bathker (2012), flipped classrooms have been around since 2000.  Earlier versions, also called inverted classrooms, offered students notes on lectures or narrated PowerPoints; class time was then spent on working on problems and discussing the material collaboratively.  More recently, in our own state of Colorado, Woodland Park High School chemistry teachers Aaron Sams and Jonathan Bergmann created vodcasts (video podcasts) of their lectures and students watched them on their iPods or computers prior to class.  When students came to class, collaborative activities took place (Schaffhauser, 2009).  []


Salman Khan of the widely utilized Khan Academy website, also advocates for the flipped classroom model, describing how a "one size fits all" lecture in school can ironically become more "humanized" when presented digitally; students can repeat the parts they don't understand, they don't feel embarrassed for not understanding, and they can reach mastery and move on when ready as opposed to the teacher feeling pressure to forge ahead even if the class isn't entirely ready. 



Do flipped classrooms work?  While flipped classrooms are still somewhat new, preliminary research shows that this model of teaching has resulted in better retention and conceptual understanding of content (Sezer, 2010) while allowing teachers more time to work on areas of difficulty with individual students.  Other advantages have more to do with student motivation, engagement, and collaboration.  With regards to teaching English as a Second Language (ESL), clearly the availability of technology is an issue for our students.  However, if schools and institutes can come up with creative ways to offer recorded lessons, lectures, videos, scenarios, etc., our students may benefit from the flipped model.  Research on flipped classrooms and ESL is just beginning, yet this individualized, engaging model has great potential.  Flipped classrooms allow students to work independently with the option of reviewing lectures or videos multiple times, and in class, the social, collaborative nature of the classroom experience meshes well with our current practices. 




Bathkur, E. (2012). Educational technology in a flipped classroom setting. Retrieved Sept. 29, 2012, from http://kimbathker.wordpress.comdigital-review/


Khan, S. (2011). Let's use video to reinvent education. Speech presented at TED2011.  Retrieved Sept. 29, 2012 from


King. A. (1993). From sage on the stage to guide on the side. College Teaching, 41(1), 30.


Schaffhauser, D. (2009). The vod couple.  T.H.E. Journal, 36(7), 19-23.


Sezer, R. (2010). Pulling out all the stops. Education, 130(3), 416-423.



ALfredo Muro


Dieter Bruhn

Hospitality and Entertainment Liaison


As a gift to our membership, CoTESOL is proud to present the highly talented Peruvian composer, Alfredo Muro, who will be performing at the CoTESOL Convention on Friday, November 9 at 5:00 p.m.  Alfredo, who studied with two of the greatest Peruvian guitarists, has delighted audiences all over the world with his remarkable skills.  In his performances, his ability to connect with his audience results in a personal and unique experience of emotional awakening.  Highlights of his prestigious career include playing for the late Pope John Paul II at the Vatican, as well as being the featured artist at the Kennedy Center for the Millennium Concert Series in Washington, D.C.  If you are planning to attend the Convention, this is an event that you won't want to miss!

2012 CoTESOL Fall Conference
Openings on the CoTESOL Board
CoTESOL Participates in Advocacy Day
CO ASSET Bill: A Year in Review
Flipped Classrooms
CoTESOL Convention Entertainment Update
Quick Links

If you have an questions or comments about this newsletter, please contact the CoTESOL Communications Liaison.
Hilario Benzon,
Communications Liaison/
Newsletter Editor


Articles and Links



 CA Poised to Spotlight ELLS Stalled in Schools


Using Games in the ELL Classroom, Part I 


 Language Demands to Grow for ELLS Under New Standards


 Evaluating ELLs for Special Needs a Challenge



Job Announcement:

The Program for Writing and Rhetoric (PWR) is approved to hire a faculty
position at the rank of Instructor in Rhetoric and Composition
specializing in teaching writing to international and multilingual
students. We seek candidates with experience living and working in diverse
communities and with second-language writing.  They may have additional

interest in digital composition and community engagement.

The PWR is the largest instructional program at CU Boulder with 
campus-wide responsibilities for undergraduate writing and rhetoric.  Our
faculty are rostered in Arts and Sciences and are recognized for their
commitment to diversity and inclusion, multi-modal composing,
sustainability, service-learning and outreach, creative non-fiction, and

residential learning communities.

We seek candidates with terminal degrees in Rhetoric and Composition and
related fields such as Applied Linguistics, Comparative Literature, Border
Studies, and Globalism. Master's degrees with exceptional experience
relevant to the position will be considered.

Instructors hold nine-month appointments and contribute substantive
service to the unit and campus.  They regularly teach a 3-3 load of lower
and upper-division courses each year with enrollments capped at 20.
Instructors hold renewable, multi-year positions with the expectation of
long-term professional commitments to teaching.  We offer competitive
salaries, full benefits, mentoring, travel support, and summer teaching
opportunities. Applications are accepted electronically at, posting #819461 and consist of (a) a cover
letter, (b) CV, (c) the names, titles, affiliations, and emails of three
references, and (d) a Teaching and Curriculum Philosophy appropriate to
the position.  Review of applications begins November 12, 2012 and the
search remains open until the position is filled.  Substantive questions
may be addressed to The University of Colorado
is an Equal Opportunity Employer and is committed to building a diverse
faculty and community.  We encourage under-represented groups such as
women, racial and ethnic minorities, individual with disabilities, and
veterans to apply. Boulder, Colorado is a vibrant community of 100,000
that promotes the arts, recreation, sustainability, and civic engagement.
Boulder has excellent public schools and is within 60 minutes of Denver's
international airport and Rocky Mountain National Park.

Dr. Andrea Feldman, Senior Instructor
University of Colorado at Boulder
317 UCB, ENVD Bldg.
Program for Writing and Rhetoric Boulder, CO 80309-0317
303-492-6011 Office:  TB#1 room 204
FAX 303-492-7877  


Call For Proposals:
TESOL 2013 March 20-23 2013, 
Dallas, Texas, USA 
Electronic Village Special Events: Call for Proposals Deadline for Submissions: November 30, 2012

You are invited to submit a proposal for participation in one or more of the CALL Interest Section's Electronic Village Special Events. More than one proposal from the same individual may be accepted based upon space availability. 
  • Proposals are being accepted for the 4 following events:


    1) EV Technology Fairs 
    • Presentation time: 25 minutes.
    • Format: similar to a poster session, desktop computer with Internet provided.
    • Event Summary: EV Technology Fairs are informal demonstrations where teachers or teacher-developers share their use of technology resources in two consecutive 25-minute sessions on one computer station in a presentation format similar to a poster session. Showcase how you use hardware, mobile technology, apps, software applications, or Internet sites. EV Technology Fair event organizers will arrange the informal demonstrations according to topics and/or themes in one of the multiple events over the three days of the convention.
    • Proposal information: 50 word summary for program book and a 100 word abstract


    2) Mini-workshops 
    • Presentation time: 90 minutes.
    • Format: workshop to no more than 20 participants; screen and projector provided for presenter and computers provided for participants; Internet provided.
    • Event Summary: After a brief demonstration, presenters guide participants in "hands-on" practice. All topics are encouraged, particularly those that involve or encourage student collaboration or engagement.
    • Proposal information: 50 word summary for program book and a 100 word abstract.
    3) Developers' Showcase 
    • Presentation time: 8-12 minutes of presentation plus 5 minutes of question-and-answer time.
    • Format: Formal presentation at front of room to seated participants. A computer with Internet, screen, and projector provided for presenter.
    • Event Summary: The Developers' Showcase is an opportunity for ESOL teachers and curriculum/course designers to demonstrate new and original desktop or laptop computer software and/or websites. Presenters have 8 to 12 minutes to demonstrate and/or operate their software/website and explain its features and applications. A Q&A session follows each presentation.
    • Proposal information: 50 word summary for program book and a 200 word abstract.

    4) Mobile Apps for Education Showcase
    • Presentation time: 8-12 minutes of presentation plus 5 minutes of question-and-answer time.
    • Format: Formal presentation at front of room to seated participants. A screen and projector provided for presenter.
    • Event Summary: The Mobile Apps for Education Showcase is an opportunity for ESOL teachers and curriculum/course designers to demonstrate new and original apps that they have created for mobile devices (iPads, tablets, etc.) or novel ways to use existing apps for language learning.
    • Proposal information: 50 word summary for program book and a 100 word abstract.
    To access more detailed descriptions of all events and a proposal submission form, go to 

Executive Board

COTESOL Executive Board
2012 - 2013


Past President

 Christine Deines


 Shannon Svaldi

1st Vice President

 Erin Kimmel

2nd Vice President

 Christopher Tombari

Executive Secretary

 Larry Fisher

Communications Liaison

 Hilario Benzon

Publishers' Liaison

 Ruth Moore

Hospitality and Entertainment

 Dieter Bruhn

Socio-Political Liaison

 Angela Bell

Adult Ed SIG Co-Chair

 Alena Sims

Adult Ed SIG Co-Chair

 Genevieve Hale

Teacher Education/

Action Research SIG Co-Chair

 Gaye Horne

Teacher Education/

Action Research SIG Co-Chair

 Stephanie Dewing

IEP/Higher Ed SIG Co-Chair

 Meghan Balderston

IEP/Higher Ed SIG Co-Chair

 Leslie Grant

Secondary Ed SIG Co-Chair

 Kelly Meeks

Secondary Ed SIG Co-Chair

 Liliana Graham

Elementary Ed SIG Co-Chair

 Jennifer Shank

Elementary Ed SIG Co-Chair

 Kenneth Kronheim

Content Area Ed SIG Co-Chair

 Nina Ambruso

Content Area Ed SIG Co-Chair

 Sandy Stokely


 Sarah Austin


 Amanda Park


Mission Statement


 CoTESOL supports its members.

  • Encourages participation in professional discourse.
  • Supports collaboration, networking, leadership and research.
  • Provides professional development.
  • Disseminates information


CoTESOL supports students and education.


  • Advocates and fosters respect for language and culture.
  • Promotes high standards.
  • Upholds the profession of English language teaching.  

Contact Information


c/o Larry Fisher

63 UCB

Boulder, CO  80309